ESP32C3 Wifi AP LED Strip Interference

I have a XIAO ESP32C3 connected to a WS2812b strip and using FastLED to send the commands. The code all works smoothly until I enable a wifi access point, then the pattern becomes semi corrupted, most noticeably there are times when the entire strip lights up full bright white a couple times per second, which is really distracting.

Just this single line in setup() triggers the errors:

WiFi.softAP("junk", "123456");

The same code on different hardware ESP32 WROOM works as expected.

I’ve tried switching the LED control pin across all 10 data pins and all show the same behavior. Any thoughts what could be causing this interference?

Hi , Sounds cool I’m gonna try it with a ring of 7,

I have these too Stick and bigger ring.
I would question how you are powering the setup , You may be pushing the sink limits of the device in AP mode but, I haven’t tested yet so I would say check your power requirements and specs.

and you should probably post up the code or connection diag. to be more help
GL :-p

Before connecting a NeoPixel strip to ANY source of power, a large capacitor (500–1000 µ F at 6.3 Volts or higher) across the + and – terminals provides a small power reservoir for abrupt changes in brightness that the power source might not otherwise handle — a common source of NeoPixel “glitching.”